Thursday, November 19, 2015

It's the peeps

I've seen discussion on some of the Facebook cruising forums on what makes cruising special. On one occasion, two people got into a discussion where one said it was the people you meet that made it all worthwhile. The other disagreed hotly, saying it was the places they went, the beauty of nature, and the power of the sea.

While I do enjoy seeing new places and being humbled by Mother Nature and the sea, for me it's the "peeps" as my friend Sabrina says on her blog. We've met some pretty incredible ones, all of whom are noteworthy, but I wanted to tell you about one couple we recently met in particular.

Judy and David

Two years ago when we ended up stuck in Oriental for a month because the Westerbeast had blown the injector pump, we had the good fortune of meeting Ellen and Randy through the Inland Provision Company. Randy gave Tim another hand while he removed the pump, and Ellen graciously delivered the pump to the overhaul shop for us while she ran errands nearby, and loaned us her truck when it was time to pick it back up. When we were strolling down the street on this visit, Randy happened by, which led to some discussion about some friends of theirs that they were waiting for. Their friends, David and Judy, were arriving on an 80-year-old wooden fishing boat - a classic Eastern-rigged dragger. David is a fisherman by trade and fishes during the summer season in Cape Cod, but this year they decided to do some cruising on the Richard & Arnold during the off season. We happened to meet them during their stay in Oriental and had the opportunity to spend a good bit of time with them.

The Richard & Arnold

The first thing you notice when you meet David and Judy is their smiles. These are folks content with their lot in the world, and genuinely happy to meet you. They are settled inside, grounded, and exude a quiet confidence from every pore. Judy would disagree, I'm sure, since she is brand new to the cruising thing and a little unsure about the technicalities, but life as the wife of a New England fisherman has given her the strength and flexibility to go pretty much anywhere their travels take them. David has fished New England waters in the Richard & Arnold solo for so many years I don't think there is much that would phase him. His face is perpetually smiling, and there's a twinkle in his eye that suggests this friendship with the sea, while challenging at times, is a mystery he has untangled.

We spent an hour with them on their boat the other day, Tim with Dave in the pilot house engaging in a rowdy discussion from which copious amounts of laughter ensued, and Judy and I in the salon talking book writing. Judy has two published books, Nautical Twilight - the story of a Cape Cod fishing family (which I bought but have yet to read), and The Fisherman's Ball, her first novel. We exchanged stories of our respective publishing experiences, the advantages of self-publishing, of our upcoming projects, and of missing our grandchildren. We left with smiles on our faces, their contentment and sense of humor spilling over to envelop us, a common occurrence for anyone with the good fortune to meet these intriguing folks.

Of all of the many benefits this life has afforded, the richness that folks like David and Judy bring to our lives has been the greatest. It's cold and rainy outside, but my heart is warmed as images of the many people we've met come to mind. Each one has woven a new color thread into the tapestry that is our cruising experience, and for that we are extraordinarily grateful. On this rainy day I can think of nothing I wish for you all more than the blessing of good peeps like these in your lives.

1 comment:

Latitude 43 said...

I agree. We have met some fun and interesting people along the way, and we're just getting started. There are times though when an anchorage void of any humans esides ourselves is most awesome.

Good post Deb